December 1, 2016
Sergey Lavrov: "Those who “helped” Donald Trump become president were the US citizens who voted for him on November 8. As President Vladimir Putin has said on a number of occasions, Russia has never sought to influence the election campaign, believing it to be an internal affair for the US. If anybody tried to interfere with the elections, it was the allies of the US. Just read what many European leaders said and wrote about Donald Trump during the campaign.
As for far-fetched stories about “Russian hackers” and other accusations against us related to the election, I am sick and tired of them. It is quite revealing that those who made insinuations of this kind and contributed to whipping up anti-Russian hysteria in the US in the run-up to the election have now sewed up their mouths. No evidence of interference in the electoral process was ever produced in the US or to the international community. This proves, yet again, that this whole story is more of a myth designed to serve momentary political objectives, rather than something real.
Russia hopes that the next US administration will refrain from repeating the mistakes of its predecessors who intentionally caused Russia-US relations to collapse. Of course, we view positively Donald Trump’s willingness stated in the course of the election campaign to promote cooperation between our countries. Russia, in turn, is always open to building an honest pragmatic dialogue with Washington on all matters of the bilateral and global agenda based on the principles of mutual trust, equality, taking into account each other’s interests and non-interference in internal affairs.
On November 14, 2016, President Vladimir Putin and US President-elect Donald Trump had their first telephone conversation, during which they confirmed their readiness to work together in order to overcome the current crisis in bilateral relations and resolve urgent international issues, including combatting international terrorism. The President-elect is about to appoint a new foreign policy team, and we hope that this team will make practical steps in this direction so that we will be able to establish constructive ties.
Of course, we are aware of the fact that fully restoring Russia-US cooperation is a challenging thing to do. Overcoming the destructive consequences of the anti-Russia policy implemented by Barack Obama’s administration will require serious efforts on both sides. However, as President Vladimir Putin has said, we are ready to do our part of the job in order to put Russia-US relations back on track.
We believe our two countries have a role to play on many issues in today’s world, including maintaining strategic stability and security and finding efficient solutions to the key challenges.
There are also opportunities for promoting mutually beneficial cooperation in trade, investment, innovation and technology. We are interested in expanding cultural and educational exchanges and facilitating people-to-people contacts. Overall, there are many things we can do, but only if there is a shared desire to move in this direction."